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I rescued my first dog yesterday, a few questions!

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        09-17-2013, 07:46 PM
      #11
    Started
    Look into doing a basic obedience class as well, so that you can learn how to lead her properly. I think harnesses only encourage pulling. She needs to learn how to lead, and what is expected of her. If you teach her how to lead, she won't choke herself.
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        09-17-2013, 08:12 PM
      #12
    Foal
    There can be many reasons that a dog drinks more, so you will want to make sure you mention it to your vet tomorrow. Hopefully it is nothing more serious than she was very thirsty, but some baseline bloodwork to rule out a few medical issues sounds in order to check her general heath. Get up to date with Her vaccines and make sure she is clear of heartworm. Each dog has a different metabolism. I used to have a 90lb collie and a 70lb golden that only neesed to eat 1/2 cup a food each once a day to maintain their weight. And then I have other dogs than need 6x that. So it really depends.

    Pedigree isn't known for being the MOST healthy food for dogs, but many dogs do just fine on it. Talk to your vet about how her weight is and what brands they recommend. I normally start them out somewhere about 1/2 of what the bag recommends, and add or remove a 1/4cup of food every 2-3 weeks as you figure out how the dog's weight needs to go.

    I prefer a collar vs a harness because I feels that they can pull on a harness. I feel that a dogs job is to make sure that the leash stays slack, but that does take training and know how to make it happen. Just like you don't allow a horse to pull on you, I feel a dog needs to have the same respect for me.
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        09-17-2013, 08:22 PM
      #13
    Trained
    We feed Taste of the Wild High Prairie or Diamond Naturals lamb and rice (depending on our budget). A 40# bag of the Diamond Naturals lasts our two 60lbs (one is a 10.5 month old puppy) four weeks. A 28lbs bag of Taste of the Wild lasts us three weeks. We free feed them and put one 2-cup butter tub scoop of food in each bowl. There is usually food left at the end of the night when we bring them in for the night.

    I know the better brands seem more expensive--and they are initially--but in the long run you end up saving money because you feed less. Look at the ingredients list on your Purina food. I'd be willing to bet, without looking, that the first five ingredients include corn (absolutely zero nutritional value) and some sort of animal by-product or meal (which is all the leftover parts of whatever animal ground up after butchering, so in the case of chicken, it's the beak, claws, bones, etc). There also may be wheat in there, as well. None of these have any nutritional value for your dog. You end up feeding more food (and picking up bigger poops) because it takes more food to get the amount of nutrients the dog needs. Switching your dog to a higher quality food will show an increase in good energy (not hyperness, just energy), and better skin and coat.

    I'll share the example of my older dog. He's now six, but I adopted him as a 45lbs 10-month-old. He is an Aussie/st Bernard mix. When I got him, I started feeding him Purina dog chow because that's what we had always fed our dogs. His long coat was rough, dry, and his undercoat fell out in clumps. We were going through a 20lbs bag of food every week that cost us $12 per bag (so $48 per month). I started doing research and realized what crap Purina was. So, I switched. Because I didn't have the funds at the moment, I "upgraded" to Purina One. I paid $15 for a 18lbs bag and it lasted us a week and a half (so $40-50 a month if I'd stuck with it). The next payday, I bought a bag of Blue Buffalo. I paid $32 for a 15lbs bag and thought I was going to cry. That 15lbs bag lasted us five weeks (almost six) and that was with having food in his bowl at all times. He stopped shedding his undercoat, his coat became shiny and soft, and he stopped itching. He also had a brighter eye and was more attentive.

    As for collar versus harness...I've tried flat collars, choke collars, pinch collars and Haltis on my older dog (the Aussie/st Bernard). None of them did a lick of good and he'd pull my shoulder off. Even my former Marine, 6', 230lbs boyfriend has a hard time walking him in any of the above mentioned. So, I got him an Easy Walk harness by Gentle Leader. Totally different concept than a traditional harness and it stopped our pulling problems immediately. With the puppy (Aussie/border collie/catahoula mix), we use a traditional anti-pull harness from Walmart (I have a pic somewhere that I can put up, if you want). We tried her in flat collar (she can duck out of it like a greyhound), a choke collar, and this harness and the only one she walks in without any pulling is the harness. Just like bits on a horse, play around with different tools until you find what works.

    Also, I second the obedience classes! Great investment!
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        09-23-2013, 07:04 PM
      #14
    Weanling
    My golden drinks alot. I even hear him once or twice a night (yes I replied in the can't sleep tread) would suggest some sort of mat around the bowl, they like to stand a let water drip everywhere.
         
        09-24-2013, 11:32 AM
      #15
    Foal
    I started her on Nutro Natural Choice sensitive skin and stomach food, and she's loving it and her coat is already getting better and she is a lot healthier :)
    Can anybody recommend how to introduce her to an anti-bite muzzle? She needs one for the vet but I highly doubt she'll accept it.
         
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